Last week, the Design Happens crew offered a peek at our outdoor living spaces, from Marianne’s party-ready wraparound deck to Jessica’s plant-packed patio. As you can see, we’re working with outdoor rooms of all shapes and sizes – and so can you. If you’re not quite sure what to do with your spatially challenged deck or patio, take a cue from designer Brian Patrick Flynn: He helped a New York family turn an underused 9-by-10-foot covered patio into a full-fledged outdoor living space with comfortable furniture, colorful accents and handy storage space. Inspired by this design, we gathered some products and tips to help you make the most of your small outdoor spot.
1. CB2 / 2. Rugs USA / 3. Pier 1 Imports / 4. World Market / 5. CB2 / 6. Wayfair
6 Ideas for a Small Yet Functional Outdoor Living Space
Outdoor spaces: We love them during the spring and summer, but it’s easy to overlook them the rest of the year. If your patio or backyard looks like an afterthought or feels disjointed from the rest of your home, never fear. By incorporating stylish furniture and cozy accents, you can create an outdoor space that’s just as appealing as your home’s interior. We collected some tips from designer Emily Henderson, who transformed this formerly plain patio into a cozy outdoor room with a collected, bohemian vibe. Get the look with these seven ideas and products:
1. World Market / 2. Overstock / 3. Etsy: farjer / 4. Pier 1 Imports
5. Dot & Bo / 6. Wayfair / 7. Target
7 Tips for a Cozy Outdoor Living Room
You guessed correctly if you chose option B. Designer Patty Malone hung a Knotted Melati hanging chair to create a cozy sitting nook on this patio. A matching Fermob bar cart provides a convenient spot to store beach towels or beverages and snacks to guarantee fun in the sun.
We randomly chose one person from the comments, and Nancy is the winner of a sea green round accent table from 55DowningStreet.com. Congrats!
Check back next Wednesday to decorate a new space.
You guessed correctly if you chose option A. Designer Emily Henderson gave this outdoor patio a bohemian vibe, with a bright patterned rug, DIY planters and stumps turned tables.
We randomly chose one person from the comments, and Madison K. is the winner of this month’s issue of HGTV magazine and Anthropologie measuring spoons. Congrats!
Check back next Wednesday to decorate a new space.
Fall is finally here, and I love taking advantage of this incredible weather (at least here in Knoxville, Tenn.) before it gets too cold. Unfortunately, my backyard is on a slope, so I can’t enjoy it as much as I’d like to. But, I would love to throw an outdoor party and put a fire pit right smack dab in the middle for my friends to enjoy. If I could choose my dream fire pit, it would look a lot like the ones below.
It may be too cold now to jump into the pool, but the cozy seating arrangement around this fire pit still allows guests to enjoy the backyard and brisk fall air.
See More Luxury Fire Pits
You chose correctly if you guessed option B. Designer Brian Patrick Flynn painted stripes on a canvas to create an outdoor-friendly rug.
We randomly chose one person from the comments, and Pamela is the winner of an HGTV baseball cap, gardening gloves and this month’s issue of HGTV Magazine. Congrats!
Check back next Wednesday to decorate a new space.
Hosting a party is more than fun, it also provides motivation for cleaning the house. Outdoor entertaining encourages us (okay, my husband) to clean the grill, wash the porch and spruce up the yard. It can also give you (okay, me) an excuse to shop for new patio furniture, accessories and outdoor games.
HGTV.com readers are also motivated to take the party outside. Ideas for an outdoor party is a hot topic right now. Editors are sharing their favorite outdoor entertaining ideas on Pinterest. Be sure to check out our most-loved cocktails, party recipes, decorating ideas, decks, patios, pools, outdoor kitchens and more throughout the next few weeks.
Tell us how you’re getting ready for the warmer days ahead…or just keep clicking (and pinning)!
Fiber optic Christmas trees have a certain something, and y’all flipped for the twinkly bathroom I posted a while back — which achieved the dazzling effect with Swarovski crystals lit by fiber optic lights – so, I figured this starry garden path lit with (you guessed it) fiber optic lights would be perfect warm weather inspiration for you.
Outdoor entertaining would be magical in a space like this, I think. The lights give off a subtle glow here at dusk, but I imagine at night it looks like a glittering galaxy — or like dozens of fireflies came to join the party. Want a little sparkle in your own garden? Head to the Starscape site to learn more about getting the look.
What are you planning to do in your garden this spring and summer?
Aside from lying, cheating, being unkind, violence, excess noise and the color of egg yolks, there’s nothing I detest more than those bought-on-sale-out-in-front-of-the-supermarket, made-to-look-old-but-really-brand-new, matchy-matchy patio sets. In fact, I’ll tailgate on plastic coolers before I’ll pop a squat on those posers. NOTE: I don’t do sports. Where the hell am I going with this, and why all the ranting? Well, a few weeks ago, my team and I gave a summery makeover to a lackluster patio deckspace in Atlanta. The patio and deck were quite beautiful; the patio furniture was another story. Our mission? To de-matchy-matchy the run-of-the-mill patio set, then set it up for summer entertaining… all in a single afternoon.
In order to make this happen, we stuck with three locations: BJ’s Membership Club, a discount fabric store and a flea market. This unexpected combination works quite well, and let me tell you why: one-stop-shopping and bang-for-your-buck. Membership and wholesale clubs have just about every brand new, buy-it-in-bulk thing you could need under one roof times twenty; flea markets have uber-affordable, that’s-so-cool-where-did-you-find-it type stuff with a one-of-a-kind designer touch. By hitting up discount fabric stores, you’re certain to find excellent outdoor fabric on clearance. Wanna put a new, affordable spin on your own matchy-matchy patio set without an entire weekend of laborious do-it-yourselfing? Then check out my ideas. Perhaps some of them are right up your deck or patio’s alley. Wait, decks and patios can’t have alleys, can they? Oh well, you get the point.
Here’s what the deck looked like after my team whipped it into shape:
Fourth of July weekend is just around the corner, which means it’s time to get your outdoor room party-ready … and quick! Last week we spruced up the deck and turned it into a stylish, weather-resistant painted area “rug.” This week, we’re making entertaining even easier by turning an old dresser into an indoor/outdoor serving buffet. Nothing can ruin the mood like having to run inside every five minutes to grab napkins … then plates … then cups … forks. (Not to mention the air conditioning bill.) So, keep your outdoor entertaining essentials easily accessible and stylishly concealed by storing them in a repurposed dresser on your deck or patio.
And yes, this project gets even more awesome with the addition of casters on the bottom for mobility. So grab that old dresser that’s been collecting dust in your attic or garage, sand it down, give it a few coats of spray paint, attach casters and you’re officially ready for your holiday hosting gig. Check out the detailed shopping list and step-by-step instructions at HGTV.com for this easy-to-create outdoor serving buffet by designer/feature blogger Brian Patrick Flynn. And of course, we want to see and hear about your finished project, too!
Tell us all about it in the comments below.
Although our deck is far from ready to decorate (I have strict rules to finish the interior of my home before I can start on the exterior), summer is here and I can’t pretend like you all aren’t outside enjoying perfect evening dinners on your perfect patios. But if you’re not, this post is all about how to build the perfect patio (on a budget!) for every one of your summer whims.
Whether you’re an alfresco dining connoisseur, urban dweller or beach bum, I’ve got a patio design for each of you. Just humor me while I live vicariously through you, OK? Deal.
You never have to sacrifice style for space.
For the Urban Dweller:
Short on space but large on style? Get the most out of your tiny terrace or mini-balcony by going modern with an elemental table, side tray and hanging planters.
All month long we’re celebrating outdoor entertaining and living with four giveaways from Frontgate. Last week, we looked to help you to heat up the night with a copper fire pit. Now we’re lighting up the night with this week’s giveaway — the Lucina Lantern — a sophisticated take on outdoor lighting. One large pillar candle will fit into this solid bronze lantern, but I think a bunch of mismatched candles would lend a stunning bohemian vibe to your next outdoor party.
You’ve got until 12/11c Monday, May 16th to leave us a comment. That’s all you have to do for a chance to win one of these gorgeous outdoor lanterns.
This week’s question: What’s special about the place you spend most of your time outdoors at your home? Is it your favorite fragrant potted plants that surround you on a sunny patio? The vintage glider you refinished that’s perfect for cool evenings spent chatting with neighbors on your front porch? Or the perfect napping hammock you and a loved one strategically placed between two shady trees?
Click for official rules.
Perfect your outdoor room with HGTV.com’s outdoor entertaining guide — filled with inspiration for preparing your patio, deck and porch for fun times spent with family and friends.
Nature may be getting ready to trick us with an April Fool’s storm, but that won’t stop me from dreaming about the great outdoors. Getting the deck or patio ready for entertaining is one of the great rituals of spring. With a combo of color, patterns, textiles and accessories, you can create an outdoor room you’ll really love.
Global Style and More
House To Home
Need a good soak? The Elemental hot tub from Dimension One Spas is designed to fit in smaller outdoor spaces.
The spas measure 60″ x 60″ x 32″, weigh 350 pounds without water and plug into a standard electrical outlet. Even better, the Canvas model can be customized with exterior paint and other accents.
What colors and patterns would you use to customize yours? And where would you put it?
The City of Lights embodies its name in small-scale in this sweet courtyard.
Andreas Meichsner for The New York Times
The private garden is part of a three-story, single-family home in the 14th arrondissement of Paris.
Make the most out of your backyard or patio by turning it into a cozy retreat perfect for relaxing (and daydreaming).
We just got a new outdoor dining set and I have been spending all of my time on the covered porch. Anything I once did inside is now done outside — morning coffee, family dinner, watching TV (no worries, the TV still resides indoors- I can see and hear it from the porch screen).Outdoor living is a joy not to be overlooked. Get inspired with these great shots and ideas:
A Family’s Private Playground From eGarden
When my husband and I moved back to Utah from California several years ago, we knew we’d be making several sacrifices in terms of lifestyle, the biggest one being the fact that winters here seem to start at the beginning of October. And then end… never. Two days ago, this is what our deck looked like. Remember: It’s the middle of April.
I’m so happy the summer is finally here! Like most people, I have grand visions of what I want my backyard to look like: pool, hot tub, high-end outdoor kitchen, buff cabana boy, Italian-imported pizza oven just like this one…
This backyard-of-my-dreams is from a special airing this Monday called Sizzling Outdoor Kitchens – check out the photo gallery to see more dreamy pix.
Back to reality – I’m starting modestly on my outdoor kitchen with a new grill (hoping to find a big Memorial Day sale). If you’re in the market for a new grill Consumer Reports‘ June edition – they rate the best gas grills (many less than $500) and give a few tips on what to watch out for:
- Manufacturers are using less stainless steel and more painted-steel as a way to cut costs. But, cooking surfaces should definitely be stainless-steel or porcelain-coated cast iron because they last longer and sear better.
- Don’t be too concerned about the Btu/hr (British thermal unit) rating – it doesn’t mean faster heating or higher temperatures, it indicates how much gas is used.
- Many retailers assemble grills free but charge for delivery. (I’m going to call friend with a pick-up truck to help bring home the grill in exchange for a backyard cookout.)